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Election petition case November 21

The High Court in Gaborone has postponed to November 21 former Ghanzi North MP Mr Noah Salakae’s election results petition case. 

 Justice Chris Gabanagae took the decision after observing that both the respondents and applicant filed their heads of argument at the eleventh hour thereby not giving the court enough time to go through the case material. 

He said it was important for all parties in the matter - applicant, respondent and the presiding judge to be given ample time to peruse each other’s submissions.

Justice Gabanagae noted that both applicant and respondent were informed well on time that the case was scheduled for yesterday therefore it was surprising that  they filed late.  

The applicant, Mr Salakae, through his lawyer, Mr Boingotlo Toteng acknowledged that they failed to submit their on time. 

“IEC attorneys only filed their responding affidavits late, on Monday night and therefore we did not have enough time to go through their case. We managed to submit this morning,” he said. 

He therefore said the postponement was necessary to give the case the attention it deserved.

The case initially cited IEC secretary as first respondent and Botswana Police Service commissioner and Attorney General as second and third respondents respectively. 

The court has since agreed with the applicant’s attorney that it was no longer necessary for Botswana Police Service and the Attorney General to be cited.

 Mr Toteng said they had a substantiated case against the IEC explaining that the second and third respondents had done their part of guarding the truck, sealing the ballot boxes and keeping safe all the material relating to the conflicted election results. 

Prior to postponing the case, the court had questioned Mr Toteng’s appearance as the applicant’s attorney.

Justice Gabanagae said there was no communication before court that he was assigned to represent the applicant. 

He noted that in the previous appearance, the applicant was represented by Mr Dick Bayford and therefore there was no communication that Mr Toteng was given the power of attorney to represent the applicant.

“You are lucky that I have given you audience without any proof that you have been given the powers to represent the applicant,”said Judge Gabanagae. Ends

Source : BOPA

Author : Moshe Galeragwe

Location : Gaborone

Event : Court case

Date : Nov 12 Tue,2019

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